How can underage drug use affect you in the long-run?

Grace Wayment, Design Editor

Underage marajuana and vaping intake has increased in the U.S., which has resulted in problems with the law, academic difficulties, and mental health issues. 

An anonymous 21 year old male who had been arrested when he was a senior in high school for a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) said, “I had been at a party and drinking way too much, no one stopped me from driving home that night.”  Though he does not remember much of the night, apparently he was swerving while driving at 60 miles per hour and almost hit a barrier head on while not wearing a seatbelt. 

His driving had gotten him pulled over, “When I was pulled over I handed the cop my debit card instead of my ID. He got the point and arrested me immediately.”

He explained that while staying in the jail cell overnight, “I wasn’t wearing shoes and I was in a light hoodie while the room was around 60 degrees. I was freezing and so sick.”

The next morning, after being released from jail, the 21 year old male said, “I was so ashamed of what had happened, instead of calling my parents I just decided to walk across town to a friend’s house and stayed there for a couple of days.” 

The anonymous 21 year old male started drugs at a very young age. “At fourteen, I started with weed and later alcohol which introduced me to psychedelics and pills but nothing really hard,” 

Underage drug use caused run-ins with the law which led to a year and a half of probation. “I have been arrested, and I got a DUI, and a minor consumption later on,” said the anonymous source.

Drugs negatively affected his quality of happiness and motivation in school. “I think I would have done a lot better in school if I had been sober, and would be an overall happier person if I had waited til I was older or never touched drugs at all.”

Though he got in legal trouble and experienced many mental tolls, he said, “I wouldn’t go back and change anything. What’s done is done, and it’s given me a lot of insight about myself and the world. It’s taught me the importance of discipline.” 

 Many teenagers may disagree, yet he says, “[drug use] is genuinely a waste of energy and can lead you down a very painful road.”

Drugs and alcohol can affect everyone differently. Knowing what could happen is important. The anonymous male source said, “In the end I think it’s good to go out and have fun, but just remember to take advice from the adults around you.”

Another anonymous male source said, “The first time I ever smoked [marijuana] was in the 8th grade.”

Though marijuana is claimed to be a “gateway” drug, this anonymous said, “It was just marijuana, and I haven’t tried any other substances.” 

During an interview with the Canyon Ridge High School resource officer, Martin Becerra said, “We’ve been having a lot of problems this year with drug use on school campus.” Since this year is Officer Becerra’s first year at CRHS, he cannot compare previous school years.

The problems CRHS has been facing are something along the lines of, “A typical day would be catching one to two kids,” with vapes and THC vapes, said Officer Becerra.

Students have been caught with vapes and THC vapes in the bathrooms and on school grounds. A vape is an inhale and exhale vapor which contains nicotine, while a THC vape is an inhale and exhale vapor containing THC (marijuana). There have been no mentions of alcohol on campus.

The problems don’t end with nicotine, “There has been an issue with THC vapes because it is easily accessible at school,” said Officer Becerra. 

Officer Becerra also explained, “The consequences for having a vape is being suspended for three days out of school suspension for the 1st offense, the 2nd offense would be five days out of school suspension, and the third offense you’re looking at expulsion, meaning you aren’t allowed in any school in the Twin Falls School District.”